NFL: Sligo 0-15 Tyrone 2-15
Tyrone picked up their first league points of the campaign when they produced an inspired performance to beat Sligo at Markievicz Park to leapfrog their opponents at the foot of the table.
After a poor display against Donegal this was more like it from the Ulster champions.
“The fortuitous goal that we got in the first-half was a massive score for us,” said manager Mickey Harte.
“We had been struggling to get goals and a goal in a tight match is always a crucial score.
“To me it was the key score because they took some fine scores in the second-half, but we were always able to maintain that advantage and Sean Cavanagh’s goal sealed it for us.”
Tyrone opened the scoring after two minutes with Owen Mulligan on target after getting onto the end of a searching ball from Brian McGuigan.
Respective corner forwards Adrian Marren and Martin Penrose exchanged points before a high ball in from McGuigan in the 10th minute was fumbled by Sligo keeper Philip Greene and Enda McGinley was on hand to first time the ball to the net.
Seven minutes later Tyrone were dealt a blow when centre half back Conor Gormley was sent-off for a second yellow card offence before they lost McGinley to an ankle injury with Niall McKenna coming on.
Penrose and Cavanagh tagged on points before Sligo were reduced to 14 men in the 28th minute when Mark Breheny was sent-off for a second yellow card offence.
McKenna’s point then put Tyrone four clear at the break.
Stephen O’Neill entered the action at half-time for Mulligan and he made an immediate impact with a well taken point.
McGuigan and Kevin Hughes combined for Cavanagh to point, but with Marren in top form the Connaught-men responded with Alan Costello and Francis Quinn also on target as they reduced the deficit to two.
Cavanagh clipped over a couple of points with O’Neill landing another and when Cavanagh scored Tyrone’s second goal the game was over as a contest.
O’Neill then hit a beauty with the outside of his boot as Tyrone moved nine points clear.
Sligo’s late rally yielded points from Quinn, Marren and Sean Davey but it was Tyrone’s day with McGuigan rewarded for his display with a point.
Sligo: Greene, Harrison, Kennedy, Donovan, Cawley, Egan, McGovern, Taylor, Davey (0-2), Costello (0-1), O’Hara, Breheny (0-2), Marren (0-7), Quinn (0-2), Coen (0-1). Subs Ewing for Davey (temporary blood], Hughes for Costello, Maye for Coen, Ewing for Egan, Curran for Cawley
Tyrone: Curran, McCrory, McCaul, Quinn, Harte Gormley, McMenamin, Hughes, Cavanagh, Harte, McGuigan (0-1), Cavanagh (1-5), Penrose (0-4), Mulligan (0-1), McGinley (1-0). Subs: McKenna (0-1) for McGinley, O’Neill (0-3) for Mulligan,McCarron for McCaul, Cassidy for Cavanagh, Swift for Harte
Referee: J McQuillan (Cavan).